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Joined: Oct 2012
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Originally Posted by Andre Magnus
Do advanced players always take quick glances at their hands when making a leap to a new chord, no matter how many years of experience and degrees they have under their belts, or do the professionals eventually play their pieces completely blindly, even when leaping?

And if you can make leaps accurately without looking, do you have any tips on how to improve this ability?

The reason behind the question: I was taught to look at the sheet music when playing and only to look down when jumping to a new place, but the problem is that, when I look back up at the notes, it always takes me some time before I find the place where I was.

Something I can contribute to.

Ragtime is famous for left-hand leaps. But these are really predictable in theory (hah). They're not easy, but I got to where these were automatic. Ragtime's chord palette is mostly limited.

But when I told my pro-level ragtime teacher the maxim I had learned about not looking down from the page, he was like "Who told you that?"

There are jumps and there are jumps. I think the rule you learn for not looking down at your hands is meant to guide people in "earlier" stages, where "earlier" can be a while, but at some point you need to internalize some jumps but still take advantage of the resource that is your eyes for unusual jumps.

Getting back to your spot on the sheet is a supplementary skill.


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Hi

Whilst this isn't a direct answer to the OP's original question it does try to explain some of the mechanics going on when playing the Piano.



It's also a great, intelligent TV program from 2 sadly missed individuals.

Cheers


Simon

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Thanks for reminding me of this video. Two fine minds gone.


"We shall always love the music of the masters, but they are all dead and now it's our turn." - Llewelyn Jones, my piano teacher
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Your post subject is "leaping blindly".
I didn't read past the first line of your post, I don't think I need to.
Do gymnasts leap blindly on the beam, or floor, or bar...?
Or do they do what they do, as a result of thousands of hours of practicing and ultimately developing skills and techniques?
Leaping will / should become as natural to you as a cartwheel is to a competitive gymnast. They don't think about every part of the movement involved in doing a cartwheel, they just do it.
But if you're not a gymnast then those basic maneuvers sure look amazing, right?
It's not amazing. It's routine, eventually....
Good luck.

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Originally Posted by JohnnyIssieBangie
Your post subject is "leaping blindly".
I didn't read past the first line of your post, I don't think I need to.
Do gymnasts leap blindly on the beam, or floor, or bar...?
Or do they do what they do, as a result of thousands of hours of practicing and ultimately developing skills and techniques?
Leaping will / should become as natural to you as a cartwheel is to a competitive gymnast. They don't think about every part of the movement involved in doing a cartwheel, they just do it.
But if you're not a gymnast then those basic maneuvers sure look amazing, right?
It's not amazing. It's routine, eventually....
Good luck.
Even the best professionals look if the passage is difficult enough when they play with the score and look a lot more(even when there are not leaps)if playing without the score. Your post refers more to shorter "leaps" which, with time, don't require looking. What's "long" for an experienced pianist is not the same as what's "long" for a less experienced pianist. Just because a leap may become automatic with enough experience doesn't mean one shouldn't be thinking about how to do it when one is less experienced.

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The skill of wide fast leaps is based on some kinds of memory, not just muscle; however , with age this kind of memory also weakens . like others.

Nahum #3212869 04/30/22 04:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Nahum
The skill of wide fast leaps is based on some kinds of memory, not just muscle; however , with age this kind of memory also weakens . like others.


Aging effects each of us in different ways and at different times.
There is no universal pattern

Last edited by dogperson; 04/30/22 04:53 PM.

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Originally Posted by JohnnyIssieBangie
Your post subject is "leaping blindly".
I didn't read past the first line of your post, I don't think I need to.
Do gymnasts leap blindly on the beam, or floor, or bar...?
Or do they do what they do, as a result of thousands of hours of practicing and ultimately developing skills and techniques?
Leaping will / should become as natural to you as a cartwheel is to a competitive gymnast. They don't think about every part of the movement involved in doing a cartwheel, they just do it.
But if you're not a gymnast then those basic maneuvers sure look amazing, right?
It's not amazing. It's routine, eventually....
Good luck.

True. When preservation of body or own life etc depends on it -------- including 'free climbing' etc --- the exponent really needs to be ultra well-conditioned, and done a heap of practice, and also relying on their own mental and physical ability to get it right. Or maximising the chance of getting it 'right' ------ every time. And there is always the chance - but don't know when it can actually come due to uncertainty of something going ..... ok .... better not get into that.

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Originally Posted by SouthPark
Originally Posted by JohnnyIssieBangie
Your post subject is "leaping blindly".
I didn't read past the first line of your post, I don't think I need to.
Do gymnasts leap blindly on the beam, or floor, or bar...?
Or do they do what they do, as a result of thousands of hours of practicing and ultimately developing skills and techniques?
Leaping will / should become as natural to you as a cartwheel is to a competitive gymnast. They don't think about every part of the movement involved in doing a cartwheel, they just do it.
But if you're not a gymnast then those basic maneuvers sure look amazing, right?
It's not amazing. It's routine, eventually....
Good luck.

True. When preservation of body or own life etc depends on it -------- including 'free climbing' etc --- the exponent really needs to be ultra well-conditioned, and done a heap of practice, and also relying on their own mental and physical ability to get it right. Or maximising the chance of getting it 'right' ------ every time. And there is always the chance - but don't know when it can actually come due to uncertainty of something going ..... ok .... better not get into that.


In terms of leaps while playing the piano, they depend on practice, repetition and time in order to execute them well. Your body needs to develop the proprioception needed to execute them.


"Music, rich, full of feeling, not soulless, is like a crystal on which the sun falls and brings forth from it a whole rainbow" - F. Chopin
"I never dreamt with my own two hands I could touch the sky" - Sappho

It's ok to be a Work In Progress
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